Pope Francis: A Man of His Word

Release Date: May 23, 2018
Review Date: May 23, 2018
Reviewer: Blake Leath
Genre(s): Biopic, Documentary/Docudrama

Unfortunately, the trailer is far better than the film (which I would describe as functional, not inspirational).

Rarely poignant, and often idealistic, socialistic, and more fluff than meat (platitudes without the essential politics to make them possible), it nonetheless is a ‘good’ film.

A series of great interviews interspersed with archival Rattle and Hum-like roadtrip and Vatican footage, plus a black-and-white throughline portraying the original St. Francis 800 years ago (that feels like a silent film depiction), Pope Francis: A Man of His Word could have been AWESOME in the hands of a masterful storyteller like Coppola or Scorsese. It could have transcended its genre and traveled the world, itself being art (which today’s Francis very much loves, and rightfully so), thereby touching more lives than it likely will.

Instead, we get something that feels more prosaic than profound, more simplistic than spiritual.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s fine. But it could have been divine.